Portrait de Charles MARLOWE
  • Surname: Charles
  • Fisrtname: Marlowe
  • Country: USA
  • Web site:

Could you depict a self-portrait ?

I was born in Omaha NE and was raised here as well. I moved away for a short time for College, but returned after college. I have live in my current house for 4 years now. I have been making knives since I was 15 and have been fulltime for 6 years.

How have you come to balisong, and why do you like this kind of knife ?

I have always liked the balisong as a knife from the utility standpoint of the design. I got my first bali when I was 15. I like the bali from the simplicity of design and the strength of the knife. Correctly made, I believe it is the strongest folding knife available.

How have you come to produce balisongs ?

I made my first bali in 2001, and really havent looked back. My balis have been very well received by the public. Balis are probably my favorite knife to build right now.

What is your source of inspiration, your muse ?

I try to design and build knives that will stand the test of time. Both in terms of materials and construction as well as aesthetically. I try to design knives that will look good today and in ten years, regardless of what the current trend may be.

Is balisong a knife which permits you to artistically express yourself ? Does it better than for another folder ?

I believe so, partly because I enjoy making them so much. Like all my knives, balis are not just a product that I produce, they are something I am passionate about. I want to make the knife feel good, and work well so that the customer can get as much enjoyment out of using it as I do making them.

Which material do you prefer for blades (different steels) and handles (Titanium, g10, brass, wood) and why are they your favorite ?

I have used alot of different steels, my favorites right now are BG42, CPM154 and Damasteel. I use Titanium, SS and brass for frames and handles. I use G10, Carbon Fibre and micarta for inlays and some frames. I occasionally use stag and wood as inserts.

Do you use CNC machine or do you work exclusively manually ? What do you think the CNC machine brings ?

All my equipment is manually controlled. I think the CNC, properly used, can bring a high degree of precision and accuracy to knifemaking. Some things that would be difficult to do on manual machines can be performed much easier on a CNC.

Do you flip balisongs ?

I carry a bali in my EDC rotation, and flip them quite often. I dont have many tricks, but mainly the basic openings.

Do you envision to make spring latch balisongs? (if you don't already do it) ?

I've thought of it, but actually prefer non sprung latches myself.

How do you think that the world of balisong will evolve in the future ?

My hope is that the knife world will become more accepting of balisongs. Once that happens, perhaps the rest of the world will accept them as the usefull knives they are.

In your opinion, what are the benefits of IKBS ?

The IKBS is one of the greatest advancments in balisongs. Properly made, it allows for a fluid handle movement with zero blade play. I have been using it with great success for several years now. I am very appreciative to the Lala brothers and Flavio Ikoma for allowing me to use this system in my knives.

Thank you Mr Marlowe for taking the time to answer our questions.

I would like to thank you for allowing me the opportunity to express how I feel about knives and balisong in particular. I feel very fortunate to be able to do what I love for a living. I big thank you to all my customers who are the ones who really make what I do possible.
-- Charles